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Shanghai Tunnels

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In Oregon, a bicycle is legally considered a vehicle, and the same Oregon road laws apply. Please “be seen” and practice safe riding. Vehicle traffic, farm equipment and narrow shoulders exist on many Oregon roads, and you may find that construction projects, traffic or other events may cause road conditions or signage to differ from the map results, ride descriptions and directions. For travel options plus weather and road conditions, visit, call 511 (in Oregon only), 800.977.6368 or 503.588.2941. Routes listed on this website are for informational purposes and intended as a reference guide only.

The `Portland Underground` tunnels, more popularly known as the `Shanghai Tunnels`, were basements of buildings that connected to other buildings through brick and stone archways that were intersected with tunnels that connected under the streets, linking block to block. These `catacombs` or `tombs`, as they were sometimes called, created a unique network of passages and thoroughfares that were used by unscrupulous individuals called `shanghaiiers` or `crimps`, in addition to `white slavers` who grabbed women and sold them into prostitution.

Venture into the `Portland Underground` to see remnants of this shocking maritime history — unique architecture, underground holding cells, a `deadfall` trapdoor, unearthed artifacts of this terrible, misguided labor practice, and more. This is a unique opportunity to learn about the secret history of shanghaiing.

For more information, visit the website below or contact the Cascade Geographic Society.


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Contact Info

  • Phone:
    (503) 622-4798
  • Address:
    120 NW Third Avenue
    Portland, OR 97209
  • Visit Website

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